Lot 5
  • 5

Umbrian School circa 1500

8,000 - 12,000 GBP
9,600 GBP
bidding is closed


  • a young page lifting and bending his right leg
  • pen and brown ink on parchment


Bears unidentified collector's mark, a star, top left (not in Lugt);
sale, Soret Collection (inscription on the mount and attribution to Raphael and an inscription, verso, mentioning the connection with Raphael's Marriage of the Virgin);
Michel Gaud, his sale, Monaco, Sotheby's, 20 June 1987, lot 19 (as 'École de l'Italie du nord, vers 1500')

Catalogue Note

This study, which clearly belongs to the Umbrian tradition, is close stylistically to A Young Man Pulling a Rope in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston (fig. 1).  That drawing, executed in silverpoint, came from the Connestabile Collection, and also belonged to Sir John Charles Robinson (1824-1913), by whom it was sold (lot 287), catalogued as a study by Raphael for the figure of one of the rejected suitors in his painting known as the Sposalizio in the Brera. As noted in an inscription on the back of the mount of the present drawing, it too was linked to the same figure in that painting, executed in 1504.  In the same year Perugino included the scene of the young suitors twice in his Marriage of the Virgin, now in the Musée des Beaux Arts, Caen.2 

The account of the Marriage of the Virgin in the Golden Legend, which was an important source for artists, tells how Joseph was chosen among a number of Mary's suitors by a sign, the miraculous flowering of his rod.  The unlucky suitors are thus shown breaking their rods in dismay.  The subject was condemned by the Council of Trent in the mid-16th century. 


1. See Drawings, Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, Boston 1968, no. 4, reproduced p. 8

2. See Pietro Scarpellini, Perugino, Milan 1984, p. 107, no. 129, reproduced fig. 217